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Selective Laser Trabeculoplasty (SLT) – FAQs answered


What is SLT?

SLT is a laser procedure designed to lower the pressure in the eye in patients with glaucoma or ocular hypertension.

Who is suitable for SLT?

Patients who have ocular hypertension, primary or secondary open angle glaucoma and need to lower their intraocular pressure (IOP) may be suitable for the procedure.

How does SLT work?

SLT works by using pulses of laser applied to particular cells in the eye.  This triggers a process in the eye which will improve drainage and therefore lower the IOP.

How is SLT performed and will it hurt?

SLT is an outpatient procedure and only takes about 15 minutes.  Your eye will be numbed using anaesthetic drops so the procedure will be painless.

How long does it take for the treatment to take effect and how long will it last?

This may be as quickly as a couple of hours after the procedure up to a couple of months.  You will be monitored to check how you have responded.

Will I still need eye drops for glaucoma following SLT?

Everyone is different, so this will be dependent on the individual.  A recent study has shown that 75% of new patients can be free from drops over a 36 month period following treatment with SLT.

What are the risks and side effects of SLT?

There are very few side effects of SLT.  There may be some inflammation of the eye following the procedure, this can be treated with eye drops and usually resolves within a couple of days.  Typically the effects of SLT will last several years, however sometimes it may be necessary to have this repeated.

What is the recovery time?

Little recovery time is needed and you should be able to resume normal daily activities immediately following treatment.


To find out more, contact Mr Thomas Ressiniotis, Consultant Ophthalmologist.

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